Expression of Interest Forms must be submitted by Aug. 1
Expanded Lot Next Door Program Expression of Interest period closes Aug 1.
More than 1,100 New Orleanians have already participated in the Lot Next Door program under its old construct, using lots to the left or right of the homes for landscaping and a variety of upgrades.
“We have some folks put in amazing pools, courtyards, and off street parking,” says Jasmine Haralson, Director of External Affairs with the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority. “It’s open to a lot of great opportunities as far as what owners can do. The change to the ordinance now opens the opportunity up to more people.”
And with a recent amendment to the ordinance passed by the New Orleans City Council in February, officials with the NORA expect to see new interest and increased participation in the program, which has now been expanded to homeowners that do not meet the homestead exemption requirement in place before the amendment.
Now, home or property owners do not need to live in the dwelling next to the open lot, which are properties homeowners sold to the state through the Road Home Program. The property owners can purchase lots next to investment property or even vacant lot they own and plan to rebuild on.
With the purchase of the adjacent lot, “now they can build bigger,” Haralson says.
Property owners can now also purchase lots behind or in front of their property, as opposed to those to the left or right only.
Eligible property owners have until Aug. 1 to submit an expression of interest form to NORA. Unlike the earlier administration of the program, Haralson says NORA will not send out “batches of letters to addresses of eligible properties.”
“Folks need to contact us,” she says, adding that an expression of interest form will not guarantee participation.
In order to be eligible property owners cannot owe back property taxes to the city or be subject to any liens or in violation or default of any other NORA program.
If two eligible property owners submit letters of interest, the selected owner will be determined by sealed bid.
Property owners who submit interest forms and meet the criteria will be notified by certified mail and must close on the lot in 30 days, Haralson says.
For more information about the Lot Next Door Program and the new changes, contact NORA at 504-658-4422 or at www.NORAWORKS.org.